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OzMods 1/700 resin Daring Class Destroyer HMAS Vampire

by Shane Jenkins

 

History

The Daring class destroyer HMAS Vampire was built at the Williamstown dockyard in Melbourne, commisioned in 1959 and finally de-commisioned in 1986. An event to which I was "priviledged" to witness, while I was working at Garden Island Dockyard in Sydney.

She was armed with twin 4.5' guns mounted in three turrets, two fore & one aft; 6x21" torpedos (removed in 1969); one Limbo depth charge mortar; two single & 2 twin 40mm Bofors mounts.

During her 27 years with the RAN, Vampire did see some action in various conflicts. The Vampire served in the Malaysian Police action, where she performed anti-infiltration patrols. She also served in the naval gunfire support role during the Vietnam conflict and finally operated around the island of Timor during the invasion by Indonesia in August and September 1975.

In 1980, it was annouced that the "Bat" would be converted to a training ship, which entailed the addition of a classroom and removing the Limbo Mortar. In 1986, due to reduced funding she was paid off and handed over the National Maritime Museum at Darling Harbour Sydney, where she is now.

The kit

OzMods kit represents HMAS Vampire after she had been converted to a training ship and as she is now at the National Maritime Museum. It also has a nice little RAN tug included as well, possibly based on the Wattle or Bronzewing??

Now, before I go any further, I must state that I have never actually built any resin kits, so please take that into account when reading the following review. I'll be basing the review on my experience with plastic kits and from what I've read about resin ships.

The kit comes firmly packed in a box and the parts are securly wrapped in bubblewrap and plastic. The photoetch is sandwiched between two bit of cardboard to protect it. I had no breakages with any of the parts

The hull is nicely cast in one piece with the funnels and part of the superstructure moulded on. The bridge and two gun mounts are mounted on one "sprue" and the rest of the parts come on a resin runner. There is a bit of flash on the resin runner, but not enough to faze a semi-experienced modeller. All the resin parts are finely moulded and there does not appear to be any pinholes on the model.

The etched brass is VERY finely done and will require a deft hand in attaching. There are no railings applied as OzMods have stated the cost to them to supply railings would be greater than the modeller supplying them themselves from WEM, GMM, Flagship etc.

The decal sheet covers all RAN Darings and both type of markings. However, since the kit is for HMAS Vampire after her conversion, you get some nice decals for the spares box. The sheet is very finely printed. The instructions are also well done, but a little more improvement in the future with the etch brass directions would make them better. It's a normal exploded diagram affair and as such, easily read.

Conclusion

This is a very nice kit and I look forward to building it, making it my first (of many) RAN ship. With the exception of the etched brass, I would recommend this as a first resin kit for first-time ship modellers, the PE raising that recommendation to someone who has had a little experience with PE, since it is very fine.




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Air Intelligence
1999 Modelers'
Reference Guides

1/32 Scale Guide $18.00
1/48 Scale Guide $25.00
1/72 Scale Guide $25.00
HH-43 Huskie Color
Reference Guide $15.00

Please add $3.20 Postage in the US.

TacAir Publications

PO Box 90933
Albuquerque NM
87199-0933
USA

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